Geography, from the Greek, ‘Geo’ (Earth) and ‘Graph’ (Writing), is the study of the physical features of the Earth, as well as the human activity that affects – and is affected by – these physical elements.
At Hensall Community Primary School, we want our children to be knowledgeable about the world they live in, starting with their local environment and moving out to other locations in Britain, mainland Europe and countries further afield. Through the geography curriculum, children develop an awareness of the relationship between people and the environment as well as an understanding of some physical processes. They learn to be skilful map readers, using grid references and applying these to practical experiences. They enjoy and learn from a variety of fieldwork experiences and use the school grounds when appropriate to enhance their learning.
Geography is a highly cross-curricular subject that encourages children to critically examine, explore, appreciate and comprehend the world in which we inhabit. At a primary curriculum level, the study of Geography focuses on notions of place, space and environment, whereby children develop the skills of understanding a locality and how humans have adapted to this physical space, transforming it – over time – in to a ‘place’. A fundamental element of working geographically is the notion of physically venturing out into the world and exploring the processes of our planet through practical fieldwork investigations.
We teach geography using The National Curriculum programmes of study; children are taught through a thematic approach on a three year cycle in KS1 and KS2 where children are in mixed aged classes. Our geography curriculum is planned, so that children’s knowledge, skills and subject specific vocabulary are built sequentially over time.
The intention of the Geography Curriculum at Hensall Community Primary School is to inspire children’s curiosity and interest to explore the world that we live in and its people, which aims to ignite a love of learning. We intend to equip children with geographical skills to develop their knowledge through studying places, people and natural and human environments. This seeks to deepen the understanding of the Earth’s human and physical forms and processes. Geography, by nature, is an investigative subject. Through our teaching, we intend to provoke thought, questions and to encourage children to discover answers to their own questions through exploration and research to enable them to gain a greater understanding and knowledge of the world and their place in it.
In order to foster children’s curiosity about the world, interest and creativity, we are enthusiastic about Geography and encourage children to explore and ask questions. Children are taught through a thematic approach on a two year cycle. Geography will be linked into some History topics, where appropriate, to develop children’s knowledge and understanding of the world. In Key Stage 1, Geography is taught through a skills based curriculum. We use the National Curriculum to select objectives and tailor teaching and learning to meet the needs and interests of the children in their class. By the end of Year Two, it is expected that the children will have developed their knowledge and understanding of all of the skills set out in Key Stage One. In Key Stage Two, teaching is used to progress children’s knowledge and skills. It will also ensure all areas of the Geography curriculum are covered in depth. Teachers are encouraged to maximise opportunities available by using the school grounds and the local area for fieldwork to enable children to base learning on first hand experiences. As well as visiting places further afield to further enhance the subject.
Children will have developed the geographical knowledge and skills to help them explore, navigate and understand the world around them and their place in it. Children’s knowledge and skills will develop progressively as they move through the school, not only to enable them to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum but to prepare them to become competent geographers in secondary education.
Here's what some of our pupils say about Geography at Hensall:
'I love discovering new countries around the world and how they compare to the UK.' Isaac Y6
'I like to find out about different countries. It makes me want to visit them.' Oliver Y4
'I enjoy making maps about places I know.' Matilda Y3
Curriculum Progression Documents
The curriculum progression document for geography shows how we map subject knowledge and skills sequentially from EYFS to Year 6. In each year group, we know the order of what our pupils have learnt, what they are learning and what they will need to learn in the future. This document enables us to identify any gaps in learning that need to be addressed to ensure that new learning makes sense to our pupils.
In addition to this we also map out subject specific vocabulary across school and examples of texts that may be used in different year groups.
Within this document you will see how this is implemented at Hensall and how we provide a range of enrichment opportunities for the children.